The paper "Theory of Thin Sliced" is an excellent example of an essay on social science. According to Gladwell people often make spontaneous decisions based on a limited amount of information. They decide things very quickly. He talks about growing his hair long and then being suspected by the police as being a criminal that they were looking for with long hair despite looking nothing like him. That’ s a good example. I don’ t recall having been thin-sliced in my past, but I have an Arab friend who has trouble at airport security simply because of his looks.
Police racially profile him based on very limited information and treat him differently. I think this is very unfair and shouldn’ t be tolerated, but there isn’ t much I can do. I think race plays a big part in the kind of thin-slicing that happens out there. Thin-slicing can work to your advantage or disadvantage. If you wear glasses and dress nicely people might immediately think you are smart or rich and then treat you with respect. That would be an advantage. If they think you are poor because you have a tear in your pants that would be a disadvantage.